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The Black Swan's Lake

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Introduction Part I:
Part 1 of Albion:

Once upon a time, in a land of Myth and a time of Magic, the Destiny of a Great Empire, united by a Powerful Warlock and the sacrifice of a Noble King, was again in peril as Darkness descended upon the land anew.
After Arthur's death in Camlann and Merlin's disappearance Queen Guinevere was left to rule over Camelot alone. With her clever mind, bountiful courage, and kindness, however, she won not only the hearts of the people and knights but also those of the enemies of Camelot. She soon restored magic to the land and all was well once more. Albion had lived in peace as a great Empire, united at last thanks to her and thanks to Merlin and Arthur who had done so much too keep the Kingdom from falling into Morgana's hands.

With all the work Guineveredid to keep the kingdom as safe and content as Merlin and Arthur had left it, however, her life flew by, and now she was getting on in age and she had never been able to bear an heir to the throne. Fortunately for Camelot – or so Gwen and the rest believed - she had her loyal knights by her side and, more recently, her trusted pupil - the young sorcerer -Rothbart. It was agreed by all who knew him and the Queen that it the Kingdom of Camelot should fall to him on the day that Guinevere was no longer able to rule. It was Rothbart who would be heir. Unfortunately, the now crowned prince Rothbart was not all that he seemed...


Introduction Part II:


The knife dropped to the ground with a loud clink. With the light of the street lamps, one could clearly read the name now written across the blade. Emma Swan, it read, in inky black letters.

“How could she be so stupid?!” Regina shouted in frustration, walking forward towards the knife, as Robin released her from the hold he hadn't realized he had her in.

“Regina!” David Scolded, outraged, still holding onto Mary Margaret, who had been frozen in panic at the sight of their daughter disappearing into the darkness.

Regina stopped in her tracks, “Well there had to be another way!” She responded, lifting her hands up beside her, hopelessly.

Mary Margaret jumped in to defend her husband and daughter, her voice shaking in concern and anger- “There wasn't - that thing was going to kill you. She saved your life!” She shouted.

“Ugh. Don't you think I know that?” Regina answered, annoyed, her face contorting in pain. If only she could have done something, saved herself or stopped Emma from making the sacrifice somehow. Damn it Emma! 

Before she could say anything more Henry came forward, his legs feeling like jelly as his shock wore off,“And now she's the dark one...” He stated, a little dazed.

“Now she's a problem.” Henry looked at Regina as she continued, “for all of us.”

Mary Margaret shook her head, refusing to believe that hope was lost, that she and David had rid Emma of Darkness only to have her be swallowed by it, that all their sacrifices and all that they'd done to Maleficent, was for nothing, “She's still good!” She affirmed, mostly for herself.

“I hope so,” Regina replied and in her usual sassy tone, added, “it's not like she rode off on a unicorn she was sucked up by a vortex of evil!”

As Regina finally turned around to face the street behind them, no longer able to bear the sight of the blasted dagger, Robin found his voice, “Where is she?” His voice sounded slightly high pitched, laced with fear and concern for his friend, “Where's she gone?” He asked.

“It doesn't bloody well matter,” Killian finally spoke up, making his way towards the knife, a look of determination in his eyes.
Robin stepped towards him in an instant, grabbing his arm, “Mate, don't” He said, trying to calm him.

Killian released himself quickly and snarled at Robin, shaking a finger at him threateningly, “Get out of my way,” he warned.

Seeing the look in his eyes, Robin stepped back, he understood that fear - that anger. Behind them, Regina turned around to watch the altercation.

Killian walked the last few steps and picked up the knife, “If I can't find her I can damn well bring her to me,” He stated, lifting the knife up before him, “Dark one? With this dagger I command thee, return!”

He looked up, turned towards Henry and the others.
They waited. David kissed Mary Margaret on the forehead, still holding her in comfort.
Nothing happened.

“Dark one, APPEAR!” Killian shouted, rage filling his voice as he lost hope.

“Put that thing down before you hurt yourself, guy liner,”Regina warned, “I thought you knew the dagger's rules.”

“With it i can summon the dark one from any corner of the world!” Killian recited, his voice a little shaky.

“Well, there's your answer.” Regina gave voice to what Killian was already starting to fear, “She's not in this world.”

Killian cursed into the night air. “Damn this! Damn it all!”

“We have to find her. We have to keep her safe. We have to keep her from hurting anyone!” Mary Margaret cried.

“Where do we even start?” Robin asked.

Henry found his voice again, “We all heard the Apprentice. We have to find Merlin. He's the only one with the power to defeat the Dark One. If we find him, he'll get the Darkness out of my mom and we'll be able to destroy it once and for all.”

“But, we've no idea where to even begin to look.” Robin said, worried.

A thought struck Killian, “Why not start with the land he came from?”

“Where's that?” Robin asked.

It was Regina who answered, “Camelot.”

Introduction Part III:
Part 2 of Albion:

Rothbart walked back to his chambers quickly under the cover of his hood. If he were caught returning from the general direction of the Queen's Chambers right now the knights would begin to suspect and that was the last thing he needed right now, when he was so close to getting what he wanted. Soon Guinevere's age and illness would take their and he would be King, of course, it was no hindrance to help the process along... a little, and Rothbart was so close to his goal he could almost taste it. He just couldn't wait any longer. He had to get rid of Gweneveire soon, but carefully so as to not arouse suspicion. If she died too quickly it wouldn't seem natural. The knights had to have no doubt that Rothbart was innocent. Once he was King he'd have more freedom to command them and he'd be able to do what he set upon in the first place – to bring back his parents' beloved mistress, the only true Queen of Camelot – Morgana.

Little did Rothbart know, however, that once he set upon his evil plan its butterfly effect stirred the ripples of the Lake of Avalon and the waters summoned forth their magics in order to prevent tragedy from befalling the land and allowing Albion to break apart again. It was a bit premature, but without Merlin around the forces had no choice. It was time to bring back the Once and Future King, so that he might protect the land from evil that was to come once more.